Pokémon Go was such a success in its first few days of release that the game’s developer, Niantic, was forced to delay its plans for a worldwide rollout. Now the company is continuing its attempt to distribute Pokémon fever to all corners of the globe.
Pokémon Go was given its official launch in the United Kingdom on July 14 and in Germany on July 13, but already it’s beginning to spread across the rest of Europe. Aspiring trainers in Italy, Spain, and Portugal can now download the game from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store.
The game uses augmented reality to allow trainers to catch Pokémon in real-world locations using their smartphones’ GPS. The enormous audience has already figured out how to play on a PC and capture series mascot Pikachu as their starter Pokémon. Go‘s instant popularity has it topping the app charts, surging past Twitter and Facebook, and it has even boosted Nintendo’s stock.
However, there’s evidence that many Pokémon fans in these countries that are just getting the game managed to grab it before it was officially available. Cellphone provider EE reported that 350,000 people in the U.K. used its network to play Go ahead of release, according to a report from TechCrunch.
The game has yet to be released in a large number of countries including Mexico, Canada, France, Russian, Japan, China, South Korea, India, and more.
There’s clearly an enormous demand for Go, but Niantic is facing big challenges in maintaining the quality of the experience. The amount of trainers attempting to play is putting a massive strain on the company’s servers, which has prompted the incremental release of the game in various regions.
Once Pokémon Go is available across all corners of the globe, the studio will be able to concentrate on introducing new content. Data miners have already discovered that the app’s code contains references to legendary Pokémon, as well as a number of items that are not currently accessible in-game.
Pokémon Go is set to continue its worldwide rollout over the coming weeks.
Updated on 07-15-2016 by Julian Chokkattu: Added in news of the game’s launch in Italy, Spain, and Portugal.